Worth Reading
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One of the pleasures of doing this column comes when readers send book suggestions. more
Author Jessica Bruder was probably the kind of kid who looked behind the screen and found the wizard working the mic. She is drawn to writing about American subcultures, often by living and traveling with her subjects. more
What's a parent to do when a child's odd behavior escalates far enough, frequently enough, that it can't be shrugged off as just an eccentric personality? And what if the problem is magnified by six? more
"The Queen's Gambit" Netflix series was recently nominated for Golden Globes awards for Best Picture and Best Actress. More than sixty million people have watched it. Though the novel the series was based on has been around since 1983, it has been hardly known outside of chess fan circles. more
Despite its being an enjoyable genre, a lot of people have burned out on reading True Crime books. more
I happened on John Kaag's "American Philosophy: A Love Story" back in 2016 and immediately became a fan of this young philosophy professor. more
I can't think of a more charming and endearing way to start the book-reading year than to recommend Shaun Bythell's "The Diary of a Bookseller" (2018) to you. more
John Steinbeck, a native Californian, went to Stanford University hoping to find someone who'd teach him to write. He didn't. What he found, according to William Souder’s new biography of the … more
We live in an age of creation and destruction by media. Rising or falling, champs or chumps, very few media stories are true as presented. Never forget that every minute televised is a minute … more
by Hugh Gilmore The ads for November's Battle of the Giants – Mr. Trump v. Mr. Biden – No Holds Barred, Ladies and Gentlemen – have lately come falling out of the skies on us like millions of … more
by Hugh Gilmore Now that the 2020 presidential election date is only double-digits days away, every mechanical device in America (and possibly Russia) has begun spewing the memes, dreams and schemes … more
A first edition copy of Hunter S. Thompson’s “Hell’s Angels.” by Hugh Gilmore I've been reading some books lately about the ways people act when they're part of a crowd. Two of them I've … more
"Tracks" by Robyn Davidson and "Shooting the Boh" by Tracy Johnston are among a trio of enjoyable books by women that can satisfy wanderlust in a time of stay-at-home orders and limited travel. by … more
by Hugh Gilmore A fellow reader, Margaret Guthrie, of Wyncote, wrote to say that she’d recently read with interest Daniel Defoe’s “A Journal of the Plague Year,” published originally in 1722, … more
Vaseem Khan's Baby Ganesh Agency Investigation series and "Station Eleven" by Emily St. John Mandel are two of many books recommended by local readers to escape the pandemic. by Hugh Gilmore As you … more
by Hugh Gilmore A review of “Anatomy Of An Epidemic: The True Story of a Town, a Hotel, a Silent Killer, and a Medical Detection Team,” by Gordon Thomas and Max Morgan-Witts. Published in 1982 … more
The Holland House Library after it was struck by a bomb in a German air raid. (Photo: Wikicommons) by Hugh Gilmore By coincidence I had started reading “The Splendid and the Vile” when our … more
by Hugh Gilmore When the cold weather slipped in last weekend and made our bones rattle, I sat down next to the fireplace and reached into the pile of fuel I keep handy for such hard late-February … more
by Hugh Gilmore According to the historian William Dalrymple, one of the very first Indian words to enter the English language was the Hindustani slang for plunder: loot. In his book, “The … more
Two new books tackle English style and usage for the Internet age. by Hugh Gilmore Here’s a pair of shin-kickers with namby-pamby titles. You’d probably not pick them up off a bookshelf at the … more
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